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Office of Refugee Resettlement Ends Funding for Local Shelter for Unaccompanied Minors

LOS FRESNOS, Texas - The International Educational Services, released a statement saying their programs will close on March 31. 

IES operated as short-term emergency shelter care for unaccompanied minors, including Jane Doe, who received national attention when seeking an abortion.

The Office of Refugee Resettlement said those children will be transferred to other ORR facilities no later than March 31, or released to an appropriate sponsor while awaiting immigration proceedings. 

The ORR had no additional comment on the closing of IES.

It is uncertain where the children will go specifically, as Southwest Key, another housing facility for unaccompanied minors in the Rio Grande Valley, could not comment on whether they would receive the children, and the Office of Refugee Resettlement has over 100 shelters in 14 states across the country.

Representative Eddie Lucio III, who serves as the general counsel for IES, said he could not comment on why the agency is closing.

In the statement, IES thanked its hundreds of dedicated staff, it is unknown what assistance or benefits the laid off employees will receive, as IES has not given any comment other than the statement given to News Center 23 earlier this week. 

According to an audit report for the fiscal year of 2016, IES received a little over $72 million in grants, with around $27 million going to the Driscoll / San Benito Shelters, $22 million going to the Los Fresnos / Casa Norma Linda Shelter and almost $23 million going to the foster care programs in Brownsville, Harlingen and Weslaco.

News Center 23 also reached out to a board member of the International Educational Services and he had no comment.  
To view the audit visit http://www.govwiki.info/pdfs/Non-Profit/TX%20International%20Educational%20Services%20Inc.%202016.pdf

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